Cardinals 5, Dodgers 1: Can’t Win ‘Em All

kershaw_2013-07-02The Dodgers just lost their first road game in literally one full month, and I’m wondering how it is I’m supposed to react to that. The offense struggled against Joe Kelly, which isn’t totally surprising without Hanley Ramirez, and Don Mattingly bunted the team right out of some opportunities, which isn’t totally surprising because it’s Don Mattingly. (I kid, somewhat, because these bunts came with Nick Punto and Clayton Kershaw, so let’s be realistic there about the likelihood of hits happening if they’d swung away; on the other hand, bunts are the worst, especially ones that come with men on second base and no outs. Never bunt, kids.)

Then Brandon League threw away any chance the team had to come back by allowing eighth-inning homers to Carlos Beltran and Matt Adams, which again, not surprising, because Brandon League.

Kershaw was fine up until the fifth inning when he let two score on three hits and a groundout, but ultimately allowed two runs or fewer for the 18th time in 24 starts. He has just 10 wins in those 18, and those are actually his only 10 wins on the season against seven losses. That’s what happens when you get the fifth-lowest run support of any starter, as he did entering today, and I’m only even mentioning his 10-8 mark because we’ll need to remember it when he doesn’t win what really ought to be a third straight Cy Young award.

After 15 straight road wins, the run is over. It was going to happen sometime, I suppose. Might as well have happened in St. Louis.

242 comments
DBrim
DBrim moderator

Just uninstalled all of my apartment hunting apps. Feels good.

Disgruntled Goat
Disgruntled Goat moderator

sigh. can we please get one more win from this series? 

DodgerBytes
DodgerBytes

Ethier blames other pitchers stepping up their game since they are facing Kershaw.

Got it, a pitcher can go above and beyond their normal production, but we are unable to do the same for Kershaw as hitters.

ThtsaPaddlin
ThtsaPaddlin

I'm so tired of hearing the argument that Kershaw doesn't get run support, as if the offense selectively shuts down when he's pitching. In reality, Kershaw's starts are generally paired with other teams' aces (or #2s), and it's not surprising to me at all that this lineup has problems scoring on other teams' aces.

Mike Petriello
Mike Petriello moderator

Only 200 comments overnight, and with a game that ended 2 hours earlier than usual? hmmm

I Digesti
I Digesti

At some point, Don needs to swap A-God and ManBearPuig in the lineup.  

DBrim
DBrim moderator

Can somebody explain what happened last night? Looks like most of the comments were deleted and not by moderators.

Lobo
Lobo

@NegativityBoner? ThtsaPaddlin There is some merit to that but it's not always the case.  Let's take a look at this season.  In the 15 Kershaw starts (out of 24 total) this season in which the Dodgers have scored three runs or less, they have matched up against the following pitchers: AJ Burnett, Patrick Corbin, Tyson Ross, Kyle Lohse, Barry Zito, Wade Miley, Dan Haren, Yovani Gallardo, Shelby Miller, Jason Marquis, Clayton Richard, Juan Nicasio (and this was a game at Coor's in which we were shutout), Homer Bailey, Hiroki Kuroda, and now Joe Kelly.  Now that's by no means a terrible group of pitchers but it's not exactly what I would call a collection of aces either.  By my reckoning, there are 3 pitchers in that group (Corbin, Gallardo, Miller) that I would consider a number 1 or 2 starter.  That leaves 12 that are number 3's or worse.  So 12 times this season that we scored 3 runs or less against a starter that is ostensibly about league average.  And since the league average ERA this season is 3.74 (for the NL) we should be scoring a little higher.

But that's just looking at the starters, let's also consider the bullpens of those teams.  NL average ERA for the bullpen this year is 3.51.  Using that as a benchmark, the teams we faced with good bullpens (above league average) are the Pirates, Diamondbacks, Padres, Brewers, and Yankees (who are above average in the AL).  So that accounts for 9 out of the 15 starts.

Now let's look at combining the two.  Just two times this season in a Kershaw start have the Dodgers faced a team that was throwing out a great starter AND had an above average bullpen.  Those games were against Patrick Corbin (a 3-0 loss in which Kershaw went 7.1 innings and gave up three runs while the Dodgers were shutout by 6 innings of Corbin and 3 innings of Arizona's volatile bullpen) and Yovani Gallardo (a complete game 1 run effort by Kershaw to beat the Brewers 3-1).  And the total number of Dodger wins in those games when they score 3 runs or less?  5-10.  In fact, and this is really sad.  In the 24 Kershaw starts this year, the Dodgers are merely 13-11, a measly two games over .500 with the absolute best pitcher in the game on the mound.  That is unacceptable.

So yeah, you could say that Kershaw doesn't get any run support

Lobo
Lobo

@steelmohawk Somewhat amazing he even has 10 wins with run support that low

steelmohawk
steelmohawk

They just want the game to end sooner

Woodsy Allen
Woodsy Allen

@DBrim I took screencaps. Do you want me to post them here, or do you want me to send them to you some other way?

Lobo
Lobo

@NegativityBoner? ThtsaPaddlin Oh and I guess I forgot Kuroda in the count of number 1's and 2's faced.  So that brings the totals to 4 starts against a number 1 or 2 pitcher and 3 against a team with a good pitcher and good bullpen.  Still awful

steelmohawk
steelmohawk

Games we lost with him on the mound:

Kelly- not an ace

Kuroda-ace

Nicasio-not an ace

Richard/Stauffer-not an ace

Miley-#1 but not sure he is their ace

Marquis-maybe their ace at the time

Miller-not an ace

Miley- see above

Zito-not an ace, but close i guess

T Ross-not an ace

Corbin-#2 but probably their ace

4 maybe 5 of just his losses(11) were against aces, do you know how this compares to Ryu or Grienke?  Or any other team's ace/pitcher?

*this was done quickly and by game logs, so if I screwed something up, its just going to be screwed up.

steelmohawk
steelmohawk

Isn't the team horrible and pathetic after a loss?

steelmohawk
steelmohawk

Some people still like Zito, I swear I heard the word gritty when he was pitching a game.  But it was probably McCarver calling the game.

steelmohawk
steelmohawk

I just was trying to avoid, what defines an ace, and just go with the default of the #1 guy, should've just used #1 instead.  I don't think he is going to be facing aces that much more often for it to be a reason the offense goes quiet when he is on the mound.

Mike Petriello
Mike Petriello moderator

@steelmohawk I think the difference here is that I don't consider "team's best pitcher" an ace. Marquis may have been the best of a group of terrible Padre pitchers (arguable), but that doesn't make him an ace.  Of the guys you listed, only Kuroda comes close for me. Maybe Corbin just because he's having such a great year.


Also, Zito is not even CLOSE to being an ace.

Lobo
Lobo

@Mike Petriello @Lobo Note to self, Mike is terrified of clown.  Use knowledge to slowly drive him insane and take over MSTI

Cochito Commish
Cochito Commish

@Woodsy Allen Literally the biggest issue in the nation right now. 

I'm going to go sleep for the rest of the day now, adios!

Woodsy Allen
Woodsy Allen

@Cochito Commish The autoplaying of following episodes is one of the worst blows to human productivity in recent history.

But really, I'm off now. Happy watching/eventual sleeping.

Cochito Commish
Cochito Commish

@Woodsy Allen I've been waiting for the little alert that says "you still watching?" so that I can stop but it never came!

Woodsy Allen
Woodsy Allen

@DBrim Do you prefer it if I delete my comments, too? No need to leave half of a pointless drama around to confuse the day people.